Tipsheets

Browse more 5,000 tipsheets from our national conferences and Watchdog Workshops on how to cover specific beats, conduct a great interview and learn countless tips on where to find the information you need.

Logged-in members can download any tipsheet, for free. Contact the Resource Center 573-882-3364 or [email protected] for questions.

  • Public records: Tips and tactics

    Norberto Santana, longtime investigative reporter and Voice of OC founding publisher, offered practical advice and strategies for crafting public records requests, tracking them and holding officials’ feet to the fire at the 2018 Palm Springs Watchdog Workshop. He includes strategies for dealing with excuses and obstacles from public officials who stand in your way of getting key documents and data.

    Tags: "public records" "public records request"

    By Norberto Santana

  • Digging deeper with data and documents

    Nicole Vap, director of investigative journalist at 9NEWS in Denver and TEGNA Inc, shared advice for moving beyond anecdotes and he-said, she-said journalism with data and documents at the 2018 Palm Springs Watchdog Workshop. She gave advice on developing a documents state of mind, navigating public records, understanding records retention schedules, exploring key records on a variety of beats and becoming familiar with key national data sets to produce high-impact local stories.

    Tags: digging dig data documents

    By Nicole Vap

    2018

  • The watchdog interview

    Investigative reporters Joel Grover and Maya Lau gave tips for mastering the watchdog interview at the 2018 Palm Springs Watchdog Workshop. Watchdog stories pose special challenges, including how best to prep for interviews, approach sources, handle tough situations, navigate ethical trouble-spots and more. Learn how to master the interview to hold your sources accountable. Seasoned watchdog journalists also will provide tips on preventing your sources from hijacking and controlling the interview.

    Tags: watchdog interview interviewing tips

    By Joel Grover, Maya Lau

    2018

  • What IRE can do for you

    Doug Haddix, IRE executive director, told people who attended the the 2018 Palm Springs Watchdog Workshop about the nonprofit's services. Haddix's 20-year newspaper career included a decade as investigative projects editor at The Columbus Dispatch and stints as city editor of daily newspapers in Scranton, Pa., and Danville, Ill. Before returning to IRE, where he previously worked as a training director, Haddix served as an assistant vice president at Ohio State University and director of the Kiplinger Program in Public Affairs Journalism.

    Tags: services ire members

    By Doug Haddix

    2018

  • Backgrounding like a boss

    Cody Winchester shared web tools and organizational strategies for scrubbing the backgrounds of people and institutions.

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    By Cody Winchester

    2018

  • Nailing the investigative interview

    Shaun Assael gave tips on nailing the investigative interview, such as preparing for tough interviews, approaching sources, staying organized and keeping the discussion on track.

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    By Shaun Assael

    2018

  • Politics: Prepping for the midterms

    Sandra Fish and Nancy Watzman explained how to cover the midterms, such as backgrounding candidates, knowing election laws, following money and donations and tracking media and misinformation.

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    By Sandra Fish & Nancy Watzman

    2018

  • Following paper and document trails

    Ken Armstrong gave tips on how to track down documents and data through public records and how to understand complicated processes and schedules.

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    By Ken Armstrong

    2018

  • Narrative storytelling for investigative journalists

    Ken Armstrong explained how to craft a narrative when writing an investigative stories. He gave tips on how to elevate investigative writing and make it stronger and better.

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    By Ken Armstrong

    2018

  • CORA! CORA! CORA! A field guide to Colorado's open records law

    David Migoya shared tips on how to investigate the police and the best steps to follow when covering the cop beat. He also gave examples of stories that came from his methods.

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    By David Migoya

    2018